E-mail: laila.abdallah@score.su.se


Talk and Practice in the ‘New Economy’: To Negotiate and Measure Gender Equality in A Multilateral Organisation
A variety of audit cultures have emerged in the formation of new norms and "soft laws" in the era of global market economy. Within the framework of international institutions and their collaborating networks, different actors discuss and negotiate how to measure social aspects in the ‘New Economy’. Abdallah's study deals with the international policy coordination of development assistance, with a specific focus on the policy-making in the social area of “gender equality”.

The policy coordination of gender equality in development assistance at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, OECD, with its Development Assistance Committee (DAC) and Development Co-operation Directorate (DCD), is a departing point of my research. As an influential multilateral expert organisation, OECD/DAC/DCD collect data to coordinate and evaluate the Member countries development assistance programmes. The study deals with how various discussions, negotiations and measurements, and thereby the evaluations, are formed to review the implementation of gender equality in development assistance. How do people within OECD discuss around the content of various criteria to review this work by the Member countries? Whose perspectives on gender equality and its responsible limits lie behind these estimations?

The OECD is also studied within a context of international negotiations with collaborating counterparts, such as other governmental organisations (GOs like UN, World Bank and IMF) and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). How are transparency and responsibility perceived and discussed in the assessment of gender equality in relation to these actors? How do the ways of talk form norms for the international policy-makings of gender equality in development assistance? And in what way does it govern the OECD’s Member States' aid distributions within this field? The study is carried out through interviews, participant observations, analysis of statistical material and documents.

The study is funded by The Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Foundation and includes in the Research Programme “Social Affairs”, conducted by a team of researchers in Political Science, Economic History and Social Anthropology at Score, Stockholm University, in Sweden. For further information, please see our webpage www.score.su.se

Selected publications

  • Abdallah, Laila, 2007: ”Gender Equality”. Discussion Report in Informal Institutions; How Social Norms Help or Hinder Development, by Johannes Jütting, Denis Drechsler, Sebastian Bartsch and Indra de Soysa (Development Centre Studies, OECD). Proceeding Volume of the Conference on “Informal Institutions and Development: What Do We Know and What Can We Do, held in December 2006 in Paris. Paris: OECD Development Centre
  • Abdallah, Laila, 2006: ”Kvinnor och grundval för välfärdsbygget”, in Digital Välfärd. Stockholm: Report by Global Utmaning, Freja Foundation
  • Katzeff, C. and Abdallah, L. 2003: "ICT-Based Learning in Knowledge Intense Micro-Sized Enterprises", in Advances in Technology-Based Education: Toward a Knowledge-Based Society. Proceedings (vol. 1) of 2nd International Conference on Multimedia and Information and Communication Technologies in Education, in Badajoz, Spain, December 3-6th 2003.
  • Sandström, Ulf, Abdallah, Laila and Hällsten, Martin 2003: Forskningsfinansiering genom regional samverkan. Stockholm: Working paper, no 22, 2003, SISTER.
  • Abdallah, Laila 2002: Process eller Resultat? Trender inom utvärdering av svensk högskoleutbildning under 1990-talet. Stockholm: Working paper, no 20, 2003, SISTER.
  • Abdallah, Laila 2002: ”Kvinnor, forskning och karriärhinder”, in Det nya forskningslandskapet: Perspektiv på vetenskap och politik, Sandström Ulf (ed.). Stockholm: Nya Doxa
  • Abdallah, Laila 2000: Amerikansk ackreditering av högre utbildning. Stockholm: SACO Report